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The SmarK RAW Rant – May 24 2004

May 24, 2004 | Posted by Scott Keith

The SmarK RAW Rant – May 24, 2004

– Live from Rockford, IL.

– Your hosts are JR & King

– Happy Victoria Day! Hope you all stopped to, uh, contemplate Queen Victoria or whatever people do on meaningless holidays such as this one.

– Now here’s a witty plug for my new book, via Stephen “Crimefighter” Lucas’s MPW report on RSPW. The pertinent passage…

Every time I come to an MPW show, someone complains about me talking about
it. EVERY TIME. And they get madder when I refute and rebut their
complaints. So anyone reading this, I should point out there’s a greater
threat against the wrestling world than me. If you are a fan of Scott
Keith, or ARE Scott Keith, you are considered a menace to the wrestling
world and must be silenced. Keith is destroying the WWE every time he
writes a Smark RAW Rant, or a SmarkDown Rant. In fact, he single-handedly
destroyed WCW giving several matches negative stars on their PPV’s. He must
not be allowed to succeed in destroying the WWE, cause if the WWE is
destroyed, then the whole wrestling industry is destroyed. He must be
banished from the Internet before it’s too late! It is vital you email the
owners of 411wrestling.com and tell them they must drop his column immediately
and contact the publisher of his upcoming book, “One Ring Circus: The Death
of the World Wrestling Federation”, that being Citadel Press and demand they
suppress this book from being released right away. The health of the
wrestling industry depends on your quick action now!!!

So remember — don’t buy my new book unless you want to contribute to the downfall of the industry. And who doesn’t, really?

– In the back, HHH talks Uncle Eric into a match with Shawn Michaels at Bad Blood, and rallies the Evolution troops as only he can.

– Opening match: Edge v. Ric Flair. Edge works a hammerlock to start but gets slugged down, so he comes back with a clothesline that puts Flair on the floor. They brawl outside and Edge wins that pretty easily and pounds away in the corner, but gets tripped up with Randy Orton and falls victim to the EYEPOKE OF DEATH. Flair takes over and slugs away in the corner, setting up the snapmare into the kneedrop. They slug it out and Edge comes back with a forearm and clothesline, and the signal cuts out. We return with Flair getting covered for two off what I presume was the Flair Flip. Orton distracts him and Flair gets a rollup for two, but Benjamin runs out to get rid of Orton, and the spear finishes Flair at 5:04. This was fine, more intended to put heat on the Benjamin-Orton program than anything else. *1/2

– Meanwhile, Vince announces a “$250,000” Diva contest. Calling ANYTHING on a wrestling show “reality TV” is the strangest irony you can think of. On the other hand, there’s worse trends to jump on than the lame “star search” ripoffs polluting the Fox network 24 hours a day.

– Meanwhile, we now know Lita’s answer, but we don’t know the question. It’s like Jeopardy for idiots or something. Speaking of which, Matt and Lita do some of their A-level acting and get back together. Too little, too late for Matt. Lita goes to get her stuff and we switch to a cameraman who was standing inside her dressing room, where Kane is waiting. You’d think the guy would WARN them. I HATE IT when they do that Hollywood shot-setup stuff, because it doesn’t work for wrestling and just takes the viewer out of the moment. And so the terrible, terrible Kane storyline continues.

– Meanwhile, HHH and Batista ambush a helpless Steven Richards, who happens to look a lot like Shawn Michaels from a distance. Instead of apologizing, HHH kicks him in the ribs again, which is pretty funny.

– La Resistance v. Hurricane & Rosey. It’s time for some serious repackaging on the face side. Conway starts with Rosey and slugs away, but gets tossed. Back in, Hurricane gets a double-team legdrop for two. A cheapshot turns the tide, as Hurricane gets dumped and abused by Grenier, and they work him over in the corner. Grenier goes to work on the leg and Conway takes him down into an anklelock, but Hurricane escapes with an enzuigiri. Tags abound and Rosey cleans house and drops a leg on Grenier, but gets caught from behind by Conway. Hurricane gets a blind leg and comes in with a high cross on Grenier for two. Rosey dumps Conway, but Hurricane’s knee gives way on a Shining Wizard attempt, and Grenier gets the rollup pin at 4:03. As long as Conway stays in, La Rez is fine. *1/4

– Meanwhile, HHH is still waiting for Shawn, and he gets blindsided by the same.

– Highlight Reel time, as Jericho gloats about putting Christian out of action, and welcomes Randy Orton to the show. Apparently Steve Austin has now been added to the list of legends killed by Orton. He’s still not gonna defend against Shelton, so Jericho asks the hard questions about ducking challengers like he’s Michael Landsberg or something, and questions Orton’s testicular fortitude. That earns him a smack, and the brawl is on, which of course leads to Batista joining the fight, and Benjamin saving. I sense a tag match tonight. Next, in fact.

– Shelton Benjamin & Chris Jericho v. Randy Orton & Batista. We’re joined in progress, as Jericho works a headlock on Orton. Jericho gets a bow-and-arrow, and then dodges a charge and clotheslines Orton out of the corner for two. Shelton comes in, but that brings in Batista and they fight over a lockup and get nowhere. Batista uses the POWER OF THE POSE to intimidate him, but since Shelton’s not gay (that I know of), it doesn’t work. They fight over a lockup and Batista slams him, but misses an elbow, and Benjamin slugs away on him before walking into a clothesline. And now Orton wants in, as he pounds away with forearms and stomps him down. Evolution works him over in the corner, but Benjamin comes back with a neckbreaker and makes the tag to Jericho. He chops away on Orton and takes him down a few times, into the Walls, but he releases and hits Batista with the springboard dropkick. Bulldog and Lionsault for Orton, but it misses, so Jericho recovers with another Walls of Jericho, releasing AGAIN to deal with Batista. Evolution bails, so Jericho follows them with the springboard tope, and we take a break. This will probably come as a shock, but Evolution is in control when we return, as they pound on Jericho. Orton works on the arm in rather nasty fashion, and Batista uses the ropes to continue. Into a top wristlock, but Jericho fights out, so Batista clotheslines him for two. Jericho fights back on Orton now, but gets taken down into a short-arm scissors for his troubles. Jericho fights out, but Orton uses an armbar takedown to stop his comeback. Benjamin gets too excited and distracts the ref, allowing some shenanigans from Evolution and a cross-armbreaker from Batista. Well, he’s no Giant Silva. In the good way. Jericho escapes with a dropkick and Orton comes in to finish, but Jericho blocks the RKO and makes the hot tag to Benjamin. Shoulderblock and Dragon Whip for Batista gets two. Blinger Splash is caught by Batista, but Jericho dropkicks him into a sunset flip for two. Batista hits him with a spinebuster for two, but Jericho saves. Orton dumps Jericho and goes for a suplex, but Benjamin rolls him up for two. Powerslam gets two. Jericho dumps Batista and Benjamin powerslams Orton for the pin at 16:23, although it looked like an attempt at an Exploider. Good stuff, although not Benoit-level tag stuff like it’s been for the past few weeks. Batista continues to improve LOTS. ***1/4

– Afterwards, Jericho goes after color commentator Trish like an idiot and gets powerbombed through the table by Tyson Tomko. I hope he doesn’t get saddled with that guy at the PPV.

– Kane joins us to tell Chris Benoit that he wants his World title. No shit, Sherlock.

– Meanwhile, Shawn secures “his” match at Bad Blood (Hell in a Cell, we shall learn soon enough) and HHH attacks him again. Those crazy kids, they can’t keep their hands off each other! So once he loses yet ANOTHER big match to HHH, will that be enough, storyline-wise, for Shawn to admit that it’s over?

– Victoria v. Molly Holly. This is non-title, as Victoria has now lost the TATU theme and has generic shitty dance music now, complete with goofy dance entrance. Molly quickly dumps Victoria with the help of Gail Kim, and they work her over on the floor. Back in, Molly gets two. Snap suplex gets two. We hit the chinlock, and that goes on for a while. Victoria gets a backslide for two and goes for the standing moonsault, but gets distracted by Gail. She comes back with the Widow’s Peak for the pin at 4:15. Victoria bores the shit out of me now. *1/2 Gail Kim tries the beatdown, but Victoria fights them off.

– Meanwhile, Uncle Eric tells Johnny Nitro to assemble the musicians in the ring. When we come back from the break, Eric tells them all to prevent Poochie and Poochette from continuing to wreck the show. I love how they group World champion Benoit in there with the rest of the jobbers and losers.

– Meanwhile, Regal & Eugene prep for the tag match tonight, but Nitro informs them that Regal isn’t cleared to wrestle yet, so Eugene either has to find a partner or go it alone. Regal once again tells him to stand up for himself and be a man.

– Garrison Cade & Coach v. Eugene & Chris Benoit. Oh, they’re so dead now. Benoit pounds Cade with chops and a clothesline to start, and a snap suplex. Crowd wants Eugene, so Benoit brings him in and he takes Cade down with a headlock. Heel miscommunication puts Coach on the floor and they criss-cross until Eugene outsmarts (?!) Cade and gets an eyepoke. Back to Benoit as he unloads on Cade in the corner and whips him into the corner, then drops a vicious elbow on the back of his neck. They slug it out in the corner, but Cade gets a corner clothesline and pounds him down. Coach time, as he’s actually drawing real heel heat, and he gets about 2.5 seconds of offense before Benoit chops him into shreds. Cade gets a cheapshot, but Benoit shrugs it off and keeps destroying Coach. Rolling germans sets up the flying headbutt, and then Benoit lets Eugene hit his own version on Coach for the pin at 4:42. They’re going balls-out trying to give Eugene every star rub possible, and I love it. Kudos to Coach for, in the words of Steve Earle, shutting up and dying like an aviator here. **

– Main event interview: Shawn Michaels tries to call out HHH, but it turns into an Evolution attack until Spinal Fusion make the save, leaving it a one-on-one brawl between the principles. Everyone charges out of the locker room to pull them apart (even A-Train, persona non grata for months now), but they keep fighting, so Bischoff announces it’s Hell in a Cell at the PPV, and we’re out at 11PM EST sharp.

The Bottom Line:

Weak ending to the show, with HHH continuing to put the focus on himself and Benoit-Kane getting a ludicrously stupid non-build thus far, so obviously that’s what their banking on Bad Blood as far as delivering the buyrate. We know they can probably bring in the goods in the match, so I’m interested in it for that, but the feud has gone WAY too long and it’s obvious who’s gonna leave it as the winner.

Anyway, a good but not blowaway show this week, as it was lacking a hot angle and a **** main event, but it was fun enough to continue the good show streak.

As a reminder, no more Smackdown rants from me, so I’ll see you again next week.


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